As consumers, we all like nothing better than feeling good about a purchase we have just made. Very often this feeling isn’t just about what we’ve bought, it can equally be about the experience we had whilst buying it. It can also be the small things which can have a big impact in achieving this ‘feel-good’ factor.

Little things do matter, things that others may take for granted. Members of AKW staff were invited to take part in training with Age UK titled ‘Sense of Ageing’ which offered all participants an incredible insight into living as an older person and enabled them to think about how the business can be improved to make things more accessible for everyone, from product creation through to customer interaction.

The purpose of the training was to help employees truly understand the barriers that design, delivery, customer service and environment can present to older and less able customers/consumers. The aim was to fulfil the following objectives:

To recognise opportunities and challenges demographic change presents to service providers/planners/designers.

To describe the impact of physical, cognitive and social aspects of ageing and sensory loss in later life on the customer journey.

To interpret experiential leaning from the Sense of Aging simulation in order to identify challenges that some older people face in their daily lives.

To identify practical solutions for product and service provision that creates a more inclusive and satisfying customer journey.

Participants undertook a sensory impairment simulation programme offing a powerful and contextualised discovery experience. They wore a range of equipment that simulated a decline in vision, hearing, touch dexterity and communication whilst carrying out a series of activities. This made them see and feel how the design and /or provision of products and services create barriers for us as we age.